If: Michael Nyman, Henry Purcell Iestyn Davies & Fretwork

Album info

Album-Release:
2019

HRA-Release:
22.03.2019

Label: Signum Records

Genre: Classical

Subgenre: Vocal

Album including Album cover

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  • Michael Nyman (b. 1944): No Time in Eternity:
  • 1No Time in Eternity: I. To Music (I)02:14
  • 2No Time in Eternity: II. No Time in Eternity00:49
  • 3No Time in Eternity: III. Fortune01:02
  • 4No Time in Eternity: IV. The Definition of Beauty00:54
  • 5No Time in Eternity: V. Things Mortal Still Mutable01:25
  • 6No Time in Eternity: VI. The Watch01:57
  • 7No Time in Eternity: VII. To Music (II)02:29
  • Michael Nyman:
  • 8Balancing the Books (arr. Richard Boothby)09:49
  • The Diary of Anne Frank (arr. Richard Boothby):
  • 9The Diary of Anne Frank (arr. Richard Boothby): If03:31
  • 10The Diary of Anne Frank (arr. Richard Boothby): Why04:19
  • Henry Purcell (1659 - 1695): Oedipus, Z.583 (arr. Richard Boothby):
  • 11Oedipus, Z.583 (arr. Richard Boothby): II. Music for a While03:52
  • Michael Nyman:
  • 12Music After a While11:51
  • Henry Purcell:
  • 13Evening Hymn, Z.193 (arr. Silas Wolston)04:51
  • Michael Nyman:
  • 14The Self-Laudatory Hymn of Inanna and her Omnipotence13:17
  • Henry Purcell:
  • 15O Solitude, my Sweetest Choice, Z.406 (arr. Richard Boothby)05:20
  • Total Runtime01:07:40

Info for If: Michael Nyman, Henry Purcell



When Michael Nyman started reinventing the English baroque back in the 1980s, one critic described the result as “pump-action Purcell.” This recording combines these two singular musical styles through the stunning voice of countertenor Iestyn Davies and viol consort Fretwork, serving as the bridge across three centuries. The programme combines bold harmonies, wondrous inventions, and melodies that will haunt your dreams – whether from the 17th century or the 21st.

Recorded following a concert tour of the programme, the release includes the premiere recording of a new commission from Michael Nyman, Music after a While – based upon Purcell’s song, or more particularly upon its strikingly original bass-line, with its insidious rising chromatics. This was a near-perfect concert, contrasting two composers whose links are stronger than many people might think and performed by musicians at the top of their profession.” Early Music Reviews, following a concert of the programme.

Iestyn Davies, counter-tenor
Ensemble Fretwork



Iestyn Davies
is a British countertenor widely recognised as one of the world’s finest singers celebrated for the beauty and technical dexterity of his voice and intelligent musicianship. Critical recognition of Iestyn’s work can be seen in two Gramophone Awards, a Grammy Award, a RPS Award for Young Singer of the Year, the Critics’ Circle Award and recently an Olivier Award Nomination. He was awarded the MBE in the Queen's New Year's Honours List 2017 for services to music.

Although blessed with a Welsh name, Iestyn hails from York, born into a musical household, his father being the founding cellist of the Fitzwilliam String Quartet.

He began his singing life as a chorister at St John’s College, Cambridge under the direction of Dr.George Guest and later Christopher Robinson.

Later, after graduating in Archaeology and Anthropology from St John’s College, Cambridge Iestyn studied at the Royal Academy of Music, London of which he is now a Fellow.

In 2015 he delighted London theatre audiences singing the role of Farinelli in the play, Farinelli and the King with Mark Rylance at the Globe Theatre. The hugely successful project transferred to the West End this season and was nominated for a number of Olivier Awards.

His operatic engagements have included Ottone (L’incoronazione di Poppea/Monteverdi) for Zürich Opera and Glyndebourne Festival Opera; Arsace (Partenope/Handel) for New York City Opera; Oberon (A Midsummer Night’s Dream/Britten) for Houston Grand Opera, English National Opera and The Metropolitan Opera, New York; Apollo (Death in Venice/Britten) for English National Opera and in his house debut at La Scala, Milan; Hamor (Jephtha/Handel) for Welsh National Opera and Opera National de Bordeaux; Steffani’s Niobe at the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden; his debut at The Metropolitan Opera Unulfo (Rodelinda/Handel) where he has also appeared as Trinculo The Tempest; the Lyric Opera of Chicago in Rinaldo; Bertarido Rodelinda for English National Opera; his debuts at the Opéra Comique and the Munich and Vienna Festivals in George Benjamin's Written on Skin and the title role Rinaldo for Glyndebourne Festival Opera. He returned to Glyndebourne in 2015 for David in Handel’s Saul.

His concert engagements have included performances at the Teatro alla Scala, Milan with Dudamel, the Concertgebouw and Tonhalle with Koopman and at the Barbican, Théâtre des Champs-Élysées, Lincoln Centre and at the BBC Proms in the Royal Albert Hall with orchestras that include the Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra, London Philharmonic, Britten Sinfonia, Concerto Köln, Concerto Copenhagen, Ensemble Matheus, the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment, Academy of Ancient Music and Scottish Chamber Orchestra. He recently made his debut, in recital, at Carnegie Hall, New York. He enjoys a successful relationship with the Wigmore Hall, where, in the 2012/13 season, he curated his own residency.

Recent highlights have included two Bach recitals at the Edinburgh International Festival, Britten's 'A Midsummer Night's Dream' at the Aldeburgh Festival and Schubert's 'Die Schöne Müllerin' with Julius Drake at Middle Temple Hall, London. Future plans include Thomas Adès's "The Exterminating Angel' at the Metropolitan Opera New York and Farinelli & the King with Mark Rylance on Broadway, New York.

His recordings include two versions of Handel’s Messiah (New College Oxford, AAM/Naxos) and (Polyphony, Britten Sinfonia/Hyperion), Handel’s Chandos Anthems on Hyperion, Handel’s Flavio for Chandos with The Early Opera Company and Christian Curnyn, Bach’s Easter Oratorio with Retrospect Ensemble, his debut solo recording Live at the Wigmore Hall with his own Ensemble Guadagni, a disc of Porpora Cantatas with Jonathan Cohen and Arcangelo, an award winning disc of works for Guadagni for Hyperion and a disc of Handel arias with The King’s Consort for Vivat. 2014/5 saw the release of The Art of Melancholy, a recital of Dowland songs for Hyperion, Flow my tears, songs for lute, viol and voice on the Wigmore Live label and Arise my muse for which he received the Gramophone Recital Award. He has added recordings of Bach Cantatas with Arcangelo, Faure Songs with Malcolm Martineau andlooks forward to the release of Bach's Magnificat and B Minor Mass in the coming months both for Hyperion.

He is the recipient of the 2010 Royal Philharmonic Young Artist of the Year Award, the 2012 & 2014 Gramophone Recital Award, the 2013 Critics’ Circle Awards for Exceptional Young Talent (Singer).

This album contains no booklet.

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